My name is Alissa Matsunaga and I am currently a 3rd year student at the Human Science International Undergraduate Degree Program (IUDP). One aspect of university that I was most excited for was the clubs and circles. Since my first year, I’ve been immersed in various extracurricular activities, namely a dance circle. Being part of a circle has been a great way for me to destress, discover new passions, and find friends that I wouldn’t have met otherwise. For those of you who are curious about circle life or how to balance extracurriculars with work and academics, I hope sharing my experience helps you!

How my dance circle operates

Dance was always something that I wanted to learn, so I joined a circle as a lighthearted way to try something new.

I am a member of LUPIN, an all-girls K-pop cover dance circle. We prepare a maximum of 4 performances per year: two individual showcases, one for Ichosai, and one for Machikanesai. Participation is flexible so you can choose which performances you want to join and how many songs you want to participate in—depending on your academic and work load. Each song is a different combination of members, so it’s always exciting to see old friends that I get to dance with again or to interact with people I haven’t gotten to know yet.

On weekdays, we practice after 5th period at Toyonaka campus. On weekends, each song rents a dance studio in Umeda. The amount of practice you need to attend varies on how many songs you choose to do.

My favorite part is seeing everyone’s costumes. We put in a lot of time and effort to practice even the tiniest details in the dances so it’s incredibly fulfilling to see the performances come together.